INBOX: Is Brandon Roy Back?

Andy G: Brandon Roy is back.  Not only did Kevin Pelton summarize his observations of Roy’s recent showing at the Seattle Pro-Am (hosted by Jamal Crawford, apparently), but there’s video too!  Pelton had this to say about it:

“By halftime, Roy had contributed about nine points and six rebounds in a close game. After the break, Roy started to remind us all of how he once could–and maybe still can–cook. He started getting to the basket on a regular basis, showing off the hesitation moves and body control that made him one of the NBA’s top shooting guards. The Roy skills are still all there; the question is whether he still has the athleticism and explosion to harness them. In that regard, I would say Roy looked somewhat better than he did during the second half of the 2010-11 season, when he struggled for the Blazers.”

The best part of this story, to me, is that it shows Brandon Roy’s knees tolerated a full game of basketball.  I have the same question as Pelton about whether he has the explosiveness to be great, but I like the fact that he logged enough minutes to post big numbers.  (Pelton estimates 25/10/5.)  Also, I like seeing him posting up and showing off those hesitation moves that allow older (read: slower) players like Paul Pierce to continue scoring in the League without the fast twitch muscle fibers of their younger opponents.

Your thoughts?

Patrick J: The key part of what you said is in that last paragraph about Roy using those hesitation moves ala Paul Pierce. Perfecting those, and going to them with confidence, will have to be a big part of Roy’s game if he is going to be a difference-maker for the Wolves. Roy will likely fight injuries the rest of his career, and his knee problems have already robbed him of some of the athleticism and bounce that made him a top 10 NBA player just two seasons ago. Pelton’s review gives cause for guarded optimism. Pelton’s a careful observer who tends not to traffick in hyperbole. So hearing him say that Roy is already using the whole array of moves he’ll need to use to succeed in ‘Sota is very good news.

Enough with the generalities. How many points and minutes per game will Roy average this season barring injury? I’ll be an optimist and go with 15 ppg and 27 mpg. The scoring would basically split the difference between his last two years in Portland.

Andy G: 11.1 points and 2.0 assists in 21.6 minutes per game.  Those numbers would represent a slight downgrade from Roy’s prime per-minute averages, but would still reflect good guard play from a sixth man.  (I’m hoping/assuming that ALEXEY SHVED commands the starting two guard spot.  More on this tomorrow or the next day.)  They also mirror Bobby Jackson’s on the 2002 Kings; Adelman’s best team ever.

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